Tuesday, December 26, 2017
The invitation said, “Lets celebrate Sue’s birthday. I’ll make a Thai Curry and cake.” And so we gathered. I took a really yummy Thai Salad. Another family brought a slow cooker Thai soup with shrimp. Another family came bearing a huge platter of fresh spring rolls. Another came with a delicious appetizer and chocolate. The food is always divine at our potlucks. We have mastered them after almost 30 years of practice.
The conversation was interesting. Everything from the impact of on line shopping, on the environment and on our highways trying to the Vinyl Cafe that had played that day. It was the last Christmas story about Dave and Morley that Stuart had performed in Thunder Bay. It is incredible that one man who we have never met could have such a huge impact on us. We laughed as we reminisced about the many Christmas stories that Stuart told. We all still miss him and our Sunday routines of listening.
Then there were heart felt gifts and cards for the birthday girl. We also still do birthday parties so well after all these years. Then we gathered in the living room to chit chat some more and have some tea. I was sitting there and thought about what Stuart had said at the end of his final Christmas concert. It was about how there is no better way to build community, to celebrate, to be joyful than to sing together. So I suggested we sing. Out came the eggs, the bells, the sparkly white accordion (oh how we all love that), and mandolin, guitar and ukulele. And we sang many beautiful songs. Some we have been singing together since we all the met in the mid - late nineties. Some are newer songs that we have learned. And my little heart grew ten thousand times. It was just so lovely. I think my hope for 2018 is that we all have more music in our lives. Perhaps we play the radio and listen. We do have the world’s greatest community radio with so many excellent hosts. There is something for everyone. I even heard that a teenager in our community is going to host a show in 2018. How exciting is that. If you like to sing there are so many choirs to choose from in the community or at a church. And for those who like to attend concerts our very own Haliburton Folk Society and the Concert Series have so much to offer. 2018 marks the 10th anniversary for the Haliburton County Winter Folk Camp and this year Betty and the Bobs are returning to teach and to perform. I guarantee it will be inspiring. We all know that life can be so hard at times. We all have our stories and our challenges. Sometimes it can be so incredibly overwhelming and all we can do is keep putting one foot in front of the other and carrying on. And seek joy. Find joy and hang around in joy. Music is joyful. I am incredibly grateful to live in a county that has so much music. Thank you to everyone who makes it happen! We are all healthier because of it.